West Africa Reporters

Constituency Project, Despite Refusal to Account for N104 Million, Enugu Senator Nominates Another N460 Million

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Mr. Utazi Godfrey a Senator representing Enugu North Senatorial District at the upper chambers of Nigerian National Assembly has again nominated N460 million as his constituency project.

Under the deal that was struck in the 2018 National budget, Utazi said a single borehole costs N18.7 million.

Utazi says N150 million will be expended on eight boreholes in Enugu Senatorial District

This is even as he has refused to account for the sum of N104 million he nominated in 2017.

WEST AFRICA REPORTERS (WAR) last month reported how Utazi refused to account for N104 million constituency project he nominated in 2017.

Under the deal, Utazi said he will purchase 251 Motorcycles for youth empowerment in Enugu North Senatorial District. And each of the Motorcycles will cost N418,000.

Checks by WAR in the open market shows that in 2017 when Utazi struck his deal, a Motorcycle was sold between N120k and N130k.

Obinna Ekene, a Motorcycle dealer in Kubwa, a satellite town in Abuja, told our reporter, that amount is inflated and outrageous. He explained that in 2017, that amount will buy three Motorcycles, and wondered whey the Senator will inflate such a high figure.

In an effort to find out how the Senator expended N104 million allocated for his constituency project, Tracka, a non-governmental organization working to ensure quality delivery of government project across Nigeria asked Utazi to account for it and show the status of implementation.

In the request made by Tracka to Utazi, the organization asked the Senator to make public the implementation status of the Motorcycle he nominated as his constituency project in 2017.

A request Utazi has refused to honour.

Tracka senior official, told WEST AFRICA REPORTERS (WAR), that the organization in the last two months has written Utazi, using the Freedom of Information (FOI) asking for the implementation status of the project he nominated in 2017.

Although constituency project was conceived to help the Lawmakers implement intervention projects lacking in communities they represent, Nigeria experience has shown the scheme has been abused.

Often many Nigerians refer to constituency project as monies meant for the boys.

Utazi is not the only one who has been caught in this act, many Federal Lawmakers simply hide under the cover of constituency project to divert public funds.

The act is carried out with the Lawmakers working in collaboration with the Ministry Department and Agencies (MDAs).

Angry with the desperation of the Lawmakers to make monies available for constituency project, Mr. Buhari, the Nigerian President accused the Lawmakers of replacing National projects with constituency project.

Attempt made by WAR to get an explanation from Utazi was not successful as his phone number did not connect.